The NatWest Bank has announced that its £2 million Skills and Opportunities Fund will re-open for applications in early September. Charities, social enterprises, community groups, state-funded schools and colleges across the UK and Ireland will be able to apply for funding of up to £35,000 to help people in disadvantaged communities develop create or access the skills and opportunities they need to help themselves and skills that will enable them to get into work or start a business.
When all applications have been received and reviewed, the NatWest will publish a shortlist of projects being considered for funding in each region. Voting will then be open to the public. The outcome of the public vote will be taken into consideration by the regional judging panels.
Previous winners included:
- John Hampden Grammar School which received funding towards a project aimed at young adults who are struggling to reach the required standards or have behavioural issues and come from deprived backgrounds.
- The Women’s Rape and Sexual Abuse Centre which received funding for a Women Ex-Offenders Peer Mentoring Programme which aims to improve the life chances of women ex-offenders through educational and volunteering opportunities.
- St. Joseph’s Primary School, in Northern Ireland received funding to become the first primary school in the UK to promote enterprise by embedding design thinking and creativity into the whole school curriculum.